Tottenham and West Ham squared off in this afternoon’s London derby with ramifications at both ends of the Premier League table.
The hosts were seeking to move into a top-four spot, following Newcastle’s slip-up against Liverpool at home on Saturday evening, while the Hammers had escaping the relegation zone firmly on their mind. However, this nearly ended up being a drab affair with its ultimate highlight being another controversial non-penalty call, benefitting David Moyes’ side for the second game running.
NO PENALTY! There were lots of appeals by Tottenham players for a handball in the box, but VAR says no! ❌ pic.twitter.com/cwsInmf17L
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) February 19, 2023
But with all the attacking prowess at Spurs’ disposal, so much so that Son Heung-min started on the bench, something had to give. And it did as the Lilywhites ran out 2-0 winners subsequently ending a two-game losing streak. The opening game came from an unlikely source while their second was all too familiar.
From the get-go Ben Davies was eclectic; effectively operating like an auxiliary winger, nothing illustrated his endeavouring approach more than producing one fewer touch in the opposition box than West Ham (five) in the first half. Davies carried that swashbuckling mindset into the second half and was duly rewarded.
After collecting a fantastic Pierre-Emile Højbjerg forward pass the left-back teed-up Spurs’ other full-back Emerson, who cooly put the hosts in front. Having scored just once in his opening 45 league appearances for the club, he’s now registered two in his last five outings.
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Going a goal down, the visitors were still in this contest, but any chance of salvaging a point or more ended four minutes after Son’s introduction. The industrious South Korean forward timed his run before slotting away Harry Kane’s through ball.
It was the fifth time in this Premier League season they would score via a substitute with four of those belonging to Son who has now been directly involved in 10 goals across his 14 top-flight matches against today’s opponents (six goals and four assists).
It's back ? pic.twitter.com/YKqzkGumwg
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) February 19, 2023
Kane and Son already hold the Premier League record for joint goal combinations with today’s link-up extending that number to 45, the next highest duo is Frank Lampard/Didier Drogba (36).